By 2030 there will be 21 million electric vehicles on the road globally, a new report released this week predicts.
After a record year for EV adoption in 2018, the report forecasts that the transition will continue, doubling the number of EVs worldwide from 2 million in 2018 to 4 million in 2020.
By 2025 there will be 12 million electric cars on the road, the report says, increasing to 21 million within the next five years.
By then, all-electric car sales will account for 70 per cent of EV sales.
The figures hail from market analysis and research firm Deloitte, which also notes that 2018 saw the most electric cars sold on the global stage.
While extremely encouraging, the report also suggests that the huge amounts of investment being made by automakers into EV production will result in an oversupply to the tune of 14 million EVs.
“Whilst there is a distinct trend developing in the EV market, the story is not a clear-cut one,” said Michael Woodward, UK automotive partner at Deloitte in a statement.
“As manufacturers increase their capacity, our projections suggest that supply will vastly outweigh consumer demand by approximately 14 million units over the next decade.
“This gearing up of EV production is driving a wide ‘expectation gap’ and manufacturers, both incumbent and new entrants alike, will need to adapt towards this new competitive landscape,” he says.
In such a competitive market, Deloitte says that an attrition rate amongst automakers is also inevitable, and that solid customer service, as well as joint ventures and partnerships may shape the auto market of the future.
“Those that can successfully build trust in their brand, ensure a positive customer experience from initial sale through to aftercare, and reflect consumer shifts towards the sharing economy in future business models will successfully navigate this.
Equally, continual investment in engineering talent and the formation of partnerships with bespoke battery producers and third-party mechanic networks will also be important,” says Woodward.
The report also suggests that the total cost of ownership for electric vehicles in the UK could be on par with that of petrol and diesel-fuelled cars as soon as 2021.
Globally, this could be reached within three years, the report says.
While the higher purchase cost of electric vehicles compared to similarly spec’d ICE vehicles often representing a barrier for buyers to go electric, reduced maintenance and fuel (or charging) costs mean price parity is reached over the life of the vehicle.
For Australians drivers, 40,000km of driving has been cited as the break even point for electric cars.
The new figures suggest that price parity would be a given at the time of sale, however government incentives are still a key factor in these figures.
“In 2018, we saw global EV sales surpass two million units for the first time; twice those sold in 2017. In the UK, the cost of petrol and diesel vehicle ownership will converge with electric over the next five years.
“Supported by existing government subsidies and technology advances, this tipping point could be reached as early as 2021.
From this point, cost will no longer be a barrier to purchase, and owning an EV will become a realistic, viable option for new buyers,” Woodward says.
Bridie Schmidt is associate editor for The Driven, sister site of Renew Economy. She has been writing about electric vehicles since 2018, and has a keen interest in the role that zero-emissions transport has to play in sustainability. She has participated in podcasts such as Download This Show with Marc Fennell and Shirtloads of Science with Karl Kruszelnicki and is co-organiser of the Northern Rivers Electric Vehicle Forum. Bridie also owns a Tesla Model Y and has it available for hire on evee.com.au.